Home > Species > Odontomachus bauri: Trap-jaw ants

Odontomachus bauri is a species of ponerinae ant, members of Odontomachus genus are often reffered to as Trap-jaw ants.

The ant can be found in Costa Rica and throughout tropical South America, the West Indies (absent from Cuba and Bahamas), and on Galapagos.

O. bauri have a pair of large, straight mandibles capable of opening 180 degrees. The jaws are locked in place by an internal mechanism, and can snap shut on prey or objects when sensory hairs on the inside of the mandibles are touched. The mandibles are powerful and fast, giving the ant its common name. The mandibles either kill or maim the prey, allowing the ant to bring it back to the nest. Odontomachus can simply lock and snap its jaws again if one bite is not enough, or to cut off bits of larger food. The mandibles also permit slow and fine movements for other tasks such as nest building and care of larvae.

Tags: Odontomachus | Bauri

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